Situated in the Peak District, the city of Derby began life as Roman fortification in 50AD. It is chiefly remembered for being the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution, when mill owners harnessed the power of water to create mass production.

Today, Derby is a central hub of commercial and social activity. Filled with historical attractions, great shopping facilities and stacks of pubs, it is the perfect place to stay and explore the unspoilt countryside.


Derby is the beginning of the Derwent Valley world heritage site, and therefore boasts an abundance of historic buildings. Take time to visit Kedleston Hall, a phenomenal stately home designed by Robert Adam. Calke Abbey is also worth a visit, especially if you have a family. This impressive country mansion was abandoned in the 1920s and hosts a secret garden, invisible passages and underground tunnels. To get a real flavour of life in the Regency period, visit Pickford's House with its lovingly recreated interiors.

If you are interested in discovering how Derby shaped the modern world, head to the Derby Industrial Museum. Housed in an old silk mill, this free museum tells the story of early industrialisation. The Museum and Art Gallery is also thoroughly enjoyable, not least because of its Egyptian artefacts. Make sure you don't miss the Cathedral, with its fascinating array of historic tombs and its imposing tower.

Derby is a frequent winner of the Britain in Bloom contest, so if you want to stretch your legs head down to the Arboretum (public gardens). There are six sports centres in the city, offering everything from badminton to swimming. The Markeaton Park is a great place to let off steam, and also offers courts for tennis and basketball. Golfers will find two courses within easy reach of the city centre. Football fans will find regular fixtures at the Pride Park Stadium.

The Peak District is famed for its outdoor activities and acts as a magnet for walkers and climbers. Derby is on the Sustrans national cycle route, and a number of centres outside the city offer everything from sailing to clay pigeon shooting.


If you are looking for designer boutiques or something a little different, make your way to the delightful cobbled streets near the Cathedral Quarter. National retail chains may be found in the Eagle Centre, St Peter's Street and the Cornmarket.

The city hosts a monthly farmers market for those with organic food on their shopping list. This comes highly recommended, as Derbyshire produces a number of local specialities, from cheeses and beers to the famous Bakewell pudding. Both this and the seasonal Continental market are housed in the Victorian Market Hall and Eagle Centre.

Nightlife and Eating Out

Derby is one of Britain's capitals of real beer, and plays host to the annual CAMRA (Campaign for Real Ale) festival. Even if this does not coincide with your visit, several of Derby's pubs offer a healthy selection of real ales. The city also boasts an abundance of places to eat and drink, from Mexican restaurants to timber framed inns. Thanks to the student population, there is food to suit every budget.

Theatregoers will find three main venues to choose from, namely the Derby Playhouse, Assembly Rooms and Guildhall Theatre. If you prefer something nearer the artistic fringe, head to the Derby Dance Centre. All the latest films are shown in the three multiplex cinemas.

Bars with late licenses are in good supply, and make a great stop off point for clubbers. Derby has a number of clubbing venues, notably Progress and The Gatehouse.

Tourist Information

Tourist Information Centre, Assembly Rooms, Market PlaceDerby DE1 3AHTel: 01332 255802Fax: 01322 256137Email: Web:


Nottingham East Midlands Airport is very close to Derby. Birmingham International and Manchester Airport are also within easy driving distance.

The city is also served by a mainline railway link to London, and the M1 is less than fifteen minutes from the city.

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